|Montserrat & Barcelona City Drive
View the city’s major landmarks on a narrated drive before traveling to a
1,000-year old Benedictine monastery that is home to Catalonia’s patron saint — the Black
Madonna of Montserrat.
WHAT YOU VISIT
Benedictine Monastery Complex - Nestled at the foot of eroded mountain
crags, the millennia-old monastery is the focus of Montserrat’s Plaza. The
monastery’s roots date back to a time when isolated hermitages occupied the
mountain caves. Montserrat was one of the great monastic complexes of the
Middle Ages, drawing monks far and wide who were philosophers, historians,
scientists, artists and musicians.
Basilica - The monastery’s superb Romanesque basilica is decorated with
statues of Christ and the 12 Apostles. The somber interior is renowned for
the gilded wooded sculpture of Catalonia’s patron saint - La Moreneta - the
Black Madonna of Montserrat. You may choose to join the visitors paying
homage to the silver altar dedicated to the Virgin.
La Sagrada Familia - Pause for a quick photo opportunity at Antonio Gaudi’s
marvelous - even though it is unfinished - modernist cathedral.
You have time to browse through the shops in Montserrat’s Plaza.
A local restaurant near Montserrat is where you stop for lunch.
WHAT YOU SEE ALONG THE WAY
Board your motorcoach for your narrated drive into the city. You pass the
Olympic Ring, the Columbus Monument, the Plaza de España and La Sagrada
Familia Cathedral. From Barcelona, drive into countryside rich with
vineyards and olive, almond and hazelnut orchards. Drive up the winding
mountain road past eroded rock outcroppings. The town and monastery sit on a
natural plateau, perched some 2,300 feet above sea level.
The drive between Barcelona and Montserrat is approximately 1 1/2 hours each